The immortal question: Where do you get your ideas?

The immortal question: Where do you get your ideas?

The first post for this blog appeared on July 14, 2014. (I was going to make that "I started writing this blog" on that date, but I didn't -- some of the ideas began in October 2013 and some in February 2014; the oldest was probably the statue I saw in 1983 and wrote about here in August.) In observance of this, my 50th post, I have been thinking about a question that every writer faces to some degree: "Where do you get your ideas?"

In all honesty, I don't mind the question. I like looking at this little collection and remembering how each of the ideas turned up -- even the original Sustaining Book post, which began when I had the flu during the polar vortex.

From the thought of a street sign in my neighborhood with a Word Worth Defending to whole books, from curious expressions to inspiring TV programs, all sorts of things have made me think "I could write about that!"

Here's what might not be a secret: I picked out the "beat" of words, languages and writing partly because I knew there were lots of ideas in it... unless I took up thinking in numbers, which won't happen. (The other reason I picked it out was, of course, that I love it.)

But that still leaves the question of where I get my ideas. That's basically everywhere, so I'd rather call it "How do I get my ideas?"

I pick them out as they swim or float by. Oh, look -- an idea! Grab it now!

I write something down. That sentence even felt funny to type -- funny ha-ha, as the saying goes. Of course I write something down. I always do. Sorting them out is the real work, finding the valuable bits in the long trails of blue ink and cutting them down, changing them into pixels and getting them out to you.

But the ideas stay with me. I suppose there are some in my notebooks now that are maturing, getting ready for their exposure like the little bits I wrote about that statue back in 1983.

Thanks for being out there, near or far, to find out how all of the little bits of the past have become these 50 posted, full-grown pieces.

For more fun with words, stop by the Margaret Serious page on Facebook.

Thanks for reading this, my 50th posted article. To get more delivered to you as they happen, type your email address in the box and click the "create subscription" button. My list is completely spam free, and you can opt out at any time. (You don't have to stay for another 50, but I hope you'll want to.)

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  • Congrats on 50 posts. To celebrate, I offer a gift.

    I was watching an old episode of "The Blacklist" on NetFlix, when the anti-hero, Ray Reddington, used a word which caused me to pause the stream and look it up.

    Breviloquent. - to speak tersely, extremely efficiently, and succintly.

  • In reply to Rick Bohning:

    Thanks for coming to the little party, Rick. "Breviloquent" makes a great gift -- stop by and see how I use it. I know I will!

  • Sometimes the ideas just flood in, I can barely keep up with them. Other times, I have to go out in search of them. Good description of the process.

  • In reply to Kathy Mathews:

    Thanks, Kathy. I like the way your image of the ideas flooding in matches my aquatic images of the ideas swimming or floating by. Sometimes we do have to swim out to meet them, don't we?

  • Congratulations on 50 posts. Well-done! Love your description of your writing process.

  • In reply to Weather Girl:

    Thank you! It's been fun, and continues to be so thanks to commenters like you.

  • Congratulations, and it's always a pleasure to read your work.

  • In reply to Aquinas wired:

    Thank you. It's always a pleasure to read your work, too.

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